Press Release: World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) Explore Plans to Combine
CHICAGO — May 10, 2016 — The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) announced today mutual interest in combining their respective organizations to more quickly advance publishing technologies on the Open Web Platform.
Tim Berners-Lee, Web Inventor and W3C Director, and Bill McCoy, IDPF Executive Director, unveiled the plans following Berners-Lee's keynote address at IDPF DigiCon at Book Expo America 2016 in Chicago, Illinois, USA.
"We share an exciting vision for W3C and IDPF to fully align the publishing industry and core Web technology. This will create a rich media environment for digital publishing that opens up new possibilities for readers, authors, and publishers," said Berners-Lee.
"Think about educational text books. The book content we know today is becoming highly interactive and accessible with links to videos and images from actual historical events and original research data. This provides greater authenticity and a more engaging learning environment for teachers and students," Berners-Lee commented.
"Whether it's EPUB content or social marketing and reader engagement, Web technologies are foundational to enabling digital content to be created, distributed globally, and viewed on any Web-enabled device as well as dedicated reading apps and eReader devices," McCoy said.
Combining W3C and IDPF Resources Will Achieve Publishing on the Web Vision
Following the announcement, representatives from W3C and IDPF explained that for three years, members from their respective communities have been collaborating to identify how the publishing industry's technology and expertise can improve the Web, and how Web technologies can create greater opportunities for the publishing industry.
"I'm enthusiastic about the prospect of joining forces with W3C. The IDPF's track record of success in developing EPUB standards for the publishing industry will be complemented by W3C's expertise in Web standards that enable accessible rich media," said George Kerscher, President of the IDPF.
Dr. Jeff Jaffe, W3C CEO, concurred, "With the full participation of the digital publishing community as well as the core web platform developers we accelerate the development of technology standards. Early Web technologies did not meet the rigorous needs of authors and publishers whose curated content is crafted into books, journals and magazines with enhanced styling."
The next steps in the process of combining the two organizations include soliciting comments from the respective memberships of W3C and IDPF and drafting a Memorandum of Understanding. Pending support from both memberships, completion of legal review, and the positive resolution of specific details, the goal is to combine the two organizations by January of 2017. The future evolution of EPUB technical standards would continue at W3C, along with broader work to improve publishing features across the entire Open Web Platform.
About the World Wide Web Consortium
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is an international consortium where Member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop Web standards. W3C primarily pursues its mission through the creation of Web standards and guidelines designed to ensure long-term growth and stewardship for the Web. Over 400 organizations are Members of the Consortium.
W3C is jointly run by the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (MIT CSAIL) in the United States, the European Research Consortium for Informatics and Mathematics (ERCIM) headquartered in France, Keio University in Japan and Beihang University in China. W3C has Offices in Australia; the Benelux countries; Brazil; Finland; France; Germany and Austria; Greece; Hungary; India; Italy; Korea; Morocco; Russia; South Africa; Spain; Sweden; and the United Kingdom and Ireland. For more information see https://www.w3.org/.
About the International Digital Publishing Forum
The International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) is the global trade and standards organization dedicated to the development and promotion of electronic publishing and digital content consumption. IDPF members include publishers, technology firms, other industry associations, and government and educational organizations. IDPF is the developer of the EPUB standard format for interchange and distribution of digital publications. http://idpf.org